MSI B360 GAMING PRO CARBON REVIEW

1. Introduction2. Packaging và Bundle3. Board Layout & Features4. UEFI5. Software6. Testing Methodology7. Tests: CPU Related8. Tests: Memory Related9. Tests: Gaming Related10. Tests: Motherboard Features Performance11. Nguồn Consumption12. Closing Thoughts13. View All Pages

There are many suitable alternatives khổng lồ Z370 motherboards for prospective buyers of intel 8th-generation “Coffee Lake” processors. 3qbavuong.vn has already assessed a number of H370 motherboards & today we are examining the B360 chipset, specifically MSI"s B360 Gaming Pro Carbon, pitched as a more affordable but slightly cut-back variation of H370.

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B360, lượt thích H370, has notable feature limitations lượt thích no tư vấn for CPU overclocking or multiple graphics card configurations (from CPU PCIe lanes) as well as memory frequencies being limited to lớn 2,666MHz. In essence, B360 is targeted at a desktop user with a locked core i3, i5 or i7 CPU, single graphics card và a modest configuration of system memory and storage.

That said, the ability to deploy a locked vi xử lý core i3, i5 or i7 along with a single high-performance graphics card, 16GB of RAM và a couple of SSDs of SATA và PCIe type is still going lớn deliver a high-performance computing experience for the vast majority. We"ve seen from Z370 motherboard đánh giá that the performance gains from CPU overclocking are noticeable, but not game-changing, with there being enough performance available from Intel"s stock turbo behaviour.

B360 adds a few more limitations than H370, including fewer chipset PCIe lanes, a smaller USB port capacity & no intel Rapid Storage giải pháp công nghệ (RST) SATA or PCIe RAID support. In specific terms the number of chipset PCIe lanes falls from 24 (Z370) to 20 (H370) khổng lồ 12 (B360) while the total number of USB 3.1 (Gen 1 & 2) ports falls from 10 (Z270) lớn 8 (H370) to 6 (B360).

These feature reductions are fairly trivial compared to lớn H370 and will hardly impact the typical desktop user with a handful of storage và USB devices, which means B360 is a stronger value for money candidate than H370. MSI plays to the affordability advantage of B360 with the B360 Gaming Pro Carbon by delivering a well-specified Gaming motherboard at a modest price – just £113.

MSI B360 Gaming Pro Carbon
Form FactorATX, 30.4cm x 24.3cm
CPU SocketIntel LGA 1151 Version 2
ChipsetIntel B360
MemoryDDR4, 4 DIMMs, up to lớn 64GB, up khổng lồ 2,666MHz
On-board GraphicsIntel HD Graphics (supported CPUs)
Discrete GraphicsSingle Nvidia graphics thẻ configurations, up khổng lồ AMD 2-way CrossFireX or Quad CrossFire
Expansion Slots1 x PCIe 3.0 x16 (x16 electrical, from CPU)1 x PCIe 3.0 x16 (x4 electrical, from chipset)3 x PCIe 3.0 x 1 (from chipset)
Storage6 x SATA III 6Gbps*2 x mét vuông (M2_1 support SATA III 6Gbps or PCIe x4 32Gbps, M2_2 PCIe only)**SATA Port 2 unavailable when using M2_1 in SATA mode
USB3 x USB 3.1 (2 Rear, Type-A và C, 1 Front, all via hãng intel B360)6 x USB 3.0 (4 Rear via ASM1074, 2 Front via hãng sản xuất intel B360)6 x USB 2.0 (2 Rear, 4 Front, all via intel B360)
NetworkingIntel I219V Gigabit Ethernet
AudioRealtek ALC1220 7.1 Channel HD Audio with headphone amplifier
Fan Headers7, all tư vấn 3/4 sạc pin fans (1 x CPU, 1 x W_PUMP, 5 x SYS)
Rear I/O1 x PS/2 combo Port4 x USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen1)1 x LAN Port5 x HD Audio Connectors2 x USB 2.0 Port1 x DisplayPort 1.22x USB 3.1 (Gen2) Type A + C1 x HDMI 1.4 Port1 x Optical S/PDIF OUT
UEFI1 x 128Mb UEFI AMI

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The MSI B360 Gaming Pro Carbon"s packaging illustrates features lượt thích the dual M.2 slots, onboard RGB lighting, high unique Realtek ALC1220 audio and USB 3.1 10Gbps support.

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The documentation bundle includes a user guide, cable labels, a driver và utility DVD & various informational inserts.

One of those is the case stand-off notification which is interesting since it highlights zones on the motherboard that shouldn"t be touched by stand-offs. There is nothing to lớn be concerned about for most users as this motherboard takes the standard 9 ATX stand-offs arrange in a 3 by 3 configuration.

However, if a micro-ATX or mini-ITX motherboard was previously installed then care should be taken to remove and refit stand-offs as appropriate. Stand-offs that make direct tương tác with the motherboard PCB, i.e. Not in the designated stand-off holes, can cause system damage và malfunctioning by shorting electrical circuits.

The accessory bundle includes a labelled I/O shield, two SATA cables, an RGB extension cable, Corsair RGB LED extension cable, two M.2 screws & a case badge.

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MSI"s B360 Gaming Pro Carbon uses a neutral black and grey colour scheme with user-customisable colour available through the onboard RGB lighting. The ‘Carbon" in the hàng hóa naming denotes the carbon fibre-style wrap applied to the CPU VRM & chipset heatsinks. The PCB is all black with some interesting grey line detailing printed in the two lower corners.

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The onboard RGB lighting is provided in three main zones:

the chipset/PCH heatsinkaudio PCB areaunderneath the long edge where the SATA ports và 24 pin sạc sits

There"s also optional RGB headers for strips of type 12v (GRB) & 5v (Digital) as well as specific connection for Corsair RGB products (LED RGB STRIP and/or HD RGB FAN), all controllable in the MSI Mystic Light Application. A fourth LED Zone. MB Function LED, is present near the memory lanes but has limited functionality as it can only be set to red, but thankfully it can be turned off.

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The block diagram illustrates the bandwidth allocation for the motherboard. Configuration peculiarities to chú ý are that the M.2 slot that supports SATA devices shares bandwidth with a SATA III port when used in SATA mode and the other M.2 slot shares bandwidth with the second PCIe 16X slot (x4 electrical).

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Board connectivity is fairly generous for the price and includes a front panel USB 3.1 (10Gbps) header, seven fan hâm mộ headers with Nuvoton 3947SA controllers & three RGB headers of three different types (12v GRB, 5v Digital & Corsair RGB). The motherboard also contains an EZ Debug LED system with lights for BOOT, VGA, DRAM and CPU.

The Corsair RGB header is located in the top right corner of the motherboard while the other two headers for generic RGB strips are located underneath the last PCIe lane at the bottom of the motherboard.

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The audio is provided by a shielded Realtek ALC1220 audio codec, packaged as Audio Boost 4, with a Texas Instruments OPA1652 amplifier and Nichicon Fine Gold (FG) Series audio capacitors all sitting on an isolated PCB segment.

The rear I/O is generous enough for the market segmentation of the motherboard. It includes ample USB of 2.0, 3.0 và 3.1 speeds with a Type-C connection, a legacy PS/2 for peripherals, a couple of modern display outputs, complete analogue và digital audio connections và Gigabit Ethernet.

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The CPU socket has direct access to lớn two tín đồ headers with a couple of system fan headers nearby for CPU coolers needing more than two headers. The CPU VRM is powered by a single 8 pin sạc EPS connection & has two heatsinks for passive cooling.

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Those heatsinks are both aluminium blocks painted black & with thermal pads for contact with the MOSFETs. They are big enough khổng lồ keep the VRMs at acceptable temperatures given that overclocking is not possible on the B360 chipset.

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Underneath the motherboard it can be seen that MSI is using only cross-head screws which is excellent for modification & maintenance of the motherboard. The point markers on the motherboard indicate the “case stand-off keep out zones” we discussed earlier, i.e. The user shouldn"t have any case stand-offs at these locations or they risk damaging the motherboard.

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The CPU VRM uses a Richtek RT3607BC controller which supports up lớn 4+2 phases, vCore + iGPU, according khổng lồ the manufacturer.

The board, at first glance, appears lớn have ten phases but without any doublers it seems that the system operates in a 4 + 2 phase mode. If that is the case then the vCore phases each use two inductors, two low-side MOSFETs & two-high side MOSFETs while the iGPU phases each get one inductor, two low-side & one high-side MOSFETs.

We"d usually expect to see doublers in this scenario allowing each vCore phase khổng lồ use one inductor, one low- & one high-side MOSFET, so it is rather unusual.

The MOSFETs being used are ten Sinopower SM4337 and twelve Sinopower 4503NH for the high- & low-sides, respectively. There are 10 inductors, eight marked TR42 (vCore) và two marked TR22 (iGPU). MSI claims to be using Japanese capacitors, though the endurance is not specified và they are not easily identifiable. The black & grey style indicates they are probably Nichicon made.

The CPU VRM solution is not the best we"ve seen for a motherboard supporting Coffee Lake CPUs at this price point (see for instance the ASRock Fatal1ty H370 Performance), but keeping in mind the lack of CPU overclocking there"s certainly nothing lớn be concerned about here.

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There are a couple of nguồn rails located below the CPU socket for VCCSA và VCCIO including a GStek GS7133 driver and NIKOS MOSFETs.

The memory VRM is likely a single phase solution và it uses a number of NIKOS MOSFETs.

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MSI’s UEFI has remained relatively consistent across its range of high-end motherboards for hãng sản xuất intel platforms for the last few years. The MSI B360 Gaming Pro Carbon sports version 5 of MSI’s Click BIOS which launches into an EZ Mode splash screen with an option khổng lồ head into the advanced mode with the press of F7.

The EZ mode is designed for a quick & high-level overview of key choices like memory XMP, basic system diagnostic data và boot order.

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Settings has a number of useful settings for booting, integrated peripherals and onboard devices. The Advanced entry has the most sub menus & options khổng lồ play with including the ability lớn toggle various different compatibility modes for storage and USB devices.

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